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No. 146, 29th August 2014

1. Mexico nabs suspects with 10,000 sea turtle eggs

SOURCE: - DATE: 21 st August 2014

Environmental prosecutors in Mexico say three suspects have been detained in the southern Pacific coast state of Oaxaca with more than 10,000 illegally harvested eggs from protected sea turtles.

The Attorney General for Environmental Protection says in a statement Thursday that police found two women and a man with 10,375 Olive Ridley Turtle (Lepidochelys olivacea) eggs during a passenger bus inspection in the town of Santo Domingo Tehuantepec. The suspects told authorities they were traveling to the coastal city of Salina Cruz.

Olive Ridley Turtles nest on the Mexican coast and are protected under the country's law. Conviction for harvesting their eggs is punishable by prison terms of one to nine years

Link to this web article online (English)

2. Egyptian Thug in Turtle Torture Probe

SOUCE: – DATE: 21 st August 2014

A probe by marine conservation NGO HEPCA shows the man, thought to be a Hurghada diving instructor, wrestling with the battered body of the majestic sea creature, a Hawksbill Turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata). The callous treatment of the animal, considered an endangered species by animal rights experts, provoked outrage on the organisation' s Facebook page. The abuser' s stomach-turning bravado has been condemned by local authorities and officials. Police have now arrested a man in connection with the abuse and he is currently awaiting charge.

Link to this web article online (English)


© Ecuadorian Ministry of the Environment

3. Ecuador: Famed Galapagos tortoise Pepe dies aged 60

SOURCE: – DATE: 23 rd August 2014

Pepe the Missionary, a giant tortoise who rose to fame as one of the most photographed animals on Ecuador's Galapagos Islands, has died at the age of 60. Pepe, who lived in a corral at the Galapagos National Park's Interpretation Centre, died of natural causes, said the park's ecosystems director, Victor Carrion. Pepe was a member of the Chelonoidis becki species native to Wolf Volcano on the island of Isabela. About 2,000 tortoises from the same species still live in their native habitat.

Link to this web article online (English)

4. India: Turtles vanishing via Lucknow, Kanpur route

SOURCE: – DATE: 24 th August 2014

Demand for turtles in the international market has made Lucknow and Kanpur of Uttar Pradesh, India, a crucial transit point for poachers and smugglers from Uttar Pradesh heading for various sea ports of the country, including Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata, said wildlife enthusiasts. According to programme director of Turtle Survival Alliance, Dr Shailendra Singh,” demand for turtles in southeast Asian countries and China is massive, besides their flesh and fabled usage as a medicine, turtles are believed, particularly in China, to have aphrodisiac properties." Data gathered from GRP and RPF for last four years revealed that, 1,131 turtles were recovered from Charbagh railway station.

Link to this web article online (English)

© danviet

5. Quang Ninh province, Vietnam: seizure of a 24-seat car transporting wildlife

SOURCE: – DATE: 26 th August 2014

On the 25 th of August, Quang Ninh Police announced that   they were seeking the man who abandoned a car transporting wildlife on the road from Ha Long city to Mong Cai city on the 22 nd of August. The car whose number was 34K-6176 transported 9 Chinese cobras (Naja atra), 22 big-headed turtle (Platysternon megacephalum) and 982kg of cattle organs. The driver recklessly sped up to escape when being given signal to stop for checking by Dam Ha district' Foreign Protection Department. Later, the car was left over at the area close to Hai Yen Ward, Mong Cai city.

ATP NOTE: Platysternon megacephalum is categorised as Endangered in IUCN Red List. All the turtles were later transferred to Soc Son Wildlife Rescue Centre near Hanoi.

Link to this web article online (Vietnamese)

6. India: smuggled star tortoises seized

SOURCE: – DATE: 26 th August 2014

The Border Security Force has seized 360 Indian star tortoises ( Geochelone elegans ), which were being smuggled out of the country to Bangladesh, are protected under Schedule IV of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 (as amended), which bans its possession and transfer in any form for commercial use. The tortoises were recovered by BSF from Gunrajpur police station area of North 24 Pargans district bordering Bangladesh. The Forest department will release them into suitable habitat.

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© zeenews

7. Toronto Zoo reveals hatching of Burmese star tortoise

SOURCE: – DATE: 27 th August 2014

The Toronto Zoo has announced what it says is the first hatching of a Burmese star tortoise (Geochelone platynota) in Canada. The zoo says the tortoise — a critically endangered species — was hatched in June after 135 days of incubation and that staff used an ultra-sensitive microphone to monitor the embryo on a daily basis. The zoo has been caring for four Burmese star tortoises since 2007, but this is the first time a fertile egg has been laid.

Link to this web article online (English)


8. The USA: Florida man caught killing, and eating, threatened tortoises

SOURCE: – DATE: 29 th August 2014

Wildlife authorities in Florida caught a man who killed and ate 15 gopher tortoises (Gopherus polyphemus) and planned to slaughter 11 more of the threatened reptiles, a spokeswoman said on Thursday. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said a tip-off led an officer to woods in Citrus County on Florida's west coast where he found tire tracks and shells dumped on the ground. Returning the next day, he found a container holding 11 live gopher tortoises. "He hid himself and waited, figuring the subject would return that afternoon," the FWC said in a statement, adding that when the man came back he admitted to feasting on the threatened species.

Link to this web article online (English)

© Canadian Press




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